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Jokes and Jokers Teasing Inconsiderate Actions Power Plays and Players Condescending Treatment

My supervisor enjoys kidding me, and he keeps saying that his remarks are all in fun. I do not like hearing his degrading comments, his repetition of the same annoying lines, and the so-called funny stories that he makes up about me. I was thinking about making some similar comments back to him and see how he likes them. What do you think?

When your supervisor says his kidding remarks are all in fun, he is kidding himself. The real determination as to whether remarks are in fun or are hurtful is best made by the recipient, not the sender.

It does take much at all to turn kidding into taunting, badgering, and even inflicting distress. His behavior raises real questions about his interpersonal skills as well as his supervisory skills.

If you try to toss some kidding remarks back at him, he will sense that you want to get into a verbal tangle with him. His most likely reaction will be to raise the stakes and come back at you with increasingly hurtful comments, since he will want to win. This raises the most common motivation behind this type of behavior, namely a need to sense some control and power.

The time he starts the kidding routine, tell him in a businesslike way that his specific comments are hurtful and interfering with your work. Perhaps if he senses that he has something to lose by bothering you, he will stop. If he does not get the message, then you should seriously consider taking it to his boss.

Companies can have real liability when supervisory personnel are bothering and taunting their employees. No kidding.

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Reader comments

Posted by tetla on 2015-08-15 15:54:30
My boss is always teasing me, for what I say, or I do or I don't. My coworkers told me that he does so because he's in love with me, but I don't care if that's the case. Sometimes I am indifferent to his actions, but sometimes I get very angry. I've told him to stop, but he doesn't. Nevertheless, he's very protective to me, and is, in his own way, kind and even nice to me. I really feel affection for him, but the teasing is annoying to me